Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD) is a relatively new diagnosis in the field of mental health. Children with DMDD have severe and frequent temper tantrums that interfere with their ability to function at home, in school or with their friends. Some of these children were previously diagnosed with bipolar disorder, even though they often did not have all the signs and symptoms. Research has also demonstrated that children with DMDD usually do not go on to have bipolar disorder in adulthood. They are more likely to develop problems with depression or anxiety.
Many children are irritable, upset or moody from time to time. Occasional temper tantrums are also a normal part of growing up. However, when children are usually irritable or angry or when temper tantrums are frequent, intense and ongoing, it may be signs of a mood disorder such as DMDD.
Symptoms of DMDD
The symptoms of DMDD include:
Some of the symptoms associated with DMDD are also present in other child psychiatric disorders, such as depression, bipolar disorder and oppositional defiant disorder. Some children with DMDD also have a second disorder, such as problems with attention or anxiety. This is why it is particularly important to get a comprehensive evaluation by a trained and qualified mental health professional.
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